Southeast Missouri State University student publication

Southeast alumna calls on students to help gather supplies for Afghan children

Wednesday, September 25, 2019
Sgt. Saleem Gul distributes school supplies to an all-boys school in Afghanistan.
Photo submitted by Haley Seger

Southeast alumna Haley Seger recruits Southeast students to aid in collecting school supplies for children in the Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

The Army National Guard specialist works with her father Daniel Seger to make this project happen.

Daniel, a former Cape Girardeau police officer, has been in Afghanistan since 2012, where he spends six to eight consecutive months at a time as an advisor to the Afghan police.

In his first year, Daniel said he met Sgt. Saleem Gul, who told him about the need for school supplies in the Nangarhar province. He explained the schools there had been gutted by bombs, and in some areas, the Taliban would still not allow girls to attend school.

According to an article published by American Press, police in Afghanistan have been some of the hardest hit by the attacks by the Taliban and Islamic State insurgents, resulting in 70% of all casualties among government forces.

Haley said collecting the supplies felt like the right thing to do, so she took to the ‘Living at Southeast’ Facebook page and began calling on students to donate in any way they could. She posted pictures of the tents where children attended school because their school building didn’t exist anymore

“Education to me and my family is very important,” Haley said. “Knowing that there are kids out there who can’t get an education because of stuff we take for granted blew my mind, and I knew I needed to do something about this.”

Although this isn’t an official program, the father-daughter duo — with the support of the students at Southeast — have helped more than 150 Afghan children by supplying books, paper and pencils.

Haley has sent three packages, each weighing 75 pounds, to Sgt. Gul in Afghanistan, who then distributes the contents to various schools around the province.

Southeast alumna Haley Seger poses with a cutout of her father, who has been serving as an advisor for the Afghan police since 2012.
Photo by Jelani Days

Daniel said there's always a need for supplies, and the children are "tickled" by anything they receive from Southeast students.

“This was definitely a community effort,” Haley said. “I wouldn’t have been able to do this without the students.”

Donations are accepted at the Office of Military and Veteran Services, room 302 in the University Center. Haley said can be reached by facebook messenger for additional information.